Taiwan Taps Youth Travel

J.L. Erickson To promote Taiwan as a new destination for international youth and student travelers, the country has launched new incentive programs including discounts, travel cards and work opportunities to encourage young overseas travelers to visit. Taiwan’s National Youth Commission is focusing on

By: J.L. Erickson

To promote Taiwan as a new destination for international youth and student travelers, the country has launched new incentive programs including discounts, travel cards and work opportunities to encourage young overseas travelers to visit.

Taiwan’s National Youth Commission is focusing on eight main themes in 2006: working holidays, Taiwanese cuisine, youth guesthouse network, living in an aboriginal village, natural wonders, learning Chinese, traditional festivals and the Ilha Formosa Music Festival.

Taiwan’s long-term goal is to increase the portion of international youth and student travelers to 25 percent of the total number of annual overseas visitors by 2008.

The government also plans to create a user-friendly youth travel environment in public transportation, accommodations and services through such changes as Taiwan Railway and Taipei MRT providing specific space for bikes and backpacks.

The commission plans to work with the country’s airlines to provide special discounts during off-peak periods and with local bus companies to offer special reductions for young travelers and carry-on facilities for bicycles. Plans are also to establish a budget accommodation system, publish youth travel brochures, enhance and expand Chinese language and cooking courses and coordinate short-term work exchange programs.

More information about the International Youth Travel Year is available at the “Taiwan Trekking for Young Travelers” site at www.youthtravel.net.tw/.

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